July 3, 1865
The Herald’s Athens, Georgia correspondent says some light is thrown upon the secret history of the initial proceedings of Jeff. Davis’ Southern Confederacy by Gen. Wilson’s recent capture in Georgia of documents and archives containing a record of the proceedings of the rebel provisional government at Montgomery, Alabama. They show that they got fairly at work in organizing their provisional government which they had in full operation in less than five weeks from the assembling of their national congress or convention in the work of framing their constitution. The documents show they had considerable tinkering and discussion. There was a strong feeling in favor of naming their southern establishment, “The Republic of Washington,” which was only defeated by a majority of one vote in favor of the title Confederate States of America.
July 5, 1865
How We Celebrated
The Germans celebrated the Fourth on Gale’s hill, and had a gay and festive time in the “broad German accent.” The Hibernians crossed over the river, and made the hills of old Kentucky vocal with their “rich Irish brogue.” The Scotch wiled away the sunny hours amid the shade and springs of Clifty, and we reckon they had a pleasant time, because they always do. The “American citizens of African descent” chose the woods adjacent to the mansion of Major John R. Cravens, and we learn they had a glorious time of it, and were undisturbed in their enjoyments....But the great centre of attraction was the beautiful Hospital grove, where the bone and sinew and the youth and beauty of the county most did congregate. Despite the oppressive heat, the assembled thousands looked gay and happy and full of “joy unspeakable.”
July 5, 1865
General John A. Logan
on punishing Rebels.
General Logan, in a speech in Lafayette, Indiana, a few days ago, said he was “in favor of hanging Jeff. Davis, Breckinridge, Benjamin, and the whole rebel Cabinet and every member of the rebel government who resigned his seat in Congress to take part in this accursed rebellion, and until the Government did this, it had not done the job it undertook.”
July 8, 1865
At last the cause of justice appears to be in the ascendency. As much as we abhor hanging, we cannot but feel a relief in the knowledge that some of the leading conspirators against the Nation have paid the penalty of their crime. It will be seen by the telegraphic dispatches in today’s issue that four of them were executed yesterday. That they were guilty of the crime charged [conspiring to assassinate Lincoln] we presume no one has a doubt, and that the punishment was just all must acknowledge.
An effort was made by the attorneys of Mrs. Surratt to arrest execution in her case....To hang women looks bad, but if they will use the respect shown to their sex as a cloak to aid them in committing the most heinous crimes known, it is but right that the strong arm of the law should disregard their sex and assert its authority by inflicting the punishment due to their offence.
July 20, 1865
Extract of a private letter from an officer of the 8th Indiana Cavalry, dated Greensboro, N.C.:
“The regiment will soon be mustered out, and sent to Indiana. The rolls are being commenced to-day for the final discharge of the regiment. So you may look for us all home in about four or five weeks, unless something unavoidable happens.
“The troops have been paid, and many of them are taking a spree on the strength of the good news. Several fights have occurred. In one fight yesterday a sergeant of company H – Edward Sheffield, from Madison – who was drunk, attempted to interfere with a guard who was arresting some one, when the said guard struck Sheffield and knocked him down. He was carried to jail, where he lay all night, and died this morning. His skull was crushed in. So much for whisky.”
Research conducted by the Lanier Mansion State Historic Site.